Friday, September 9, 2011
The Great Race
I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Foot racing in ancient Greece was a highly valued sport, a favored form of exercise, and a necessity in war, as troops needed to be able to engage or retreat quickly, and news of the battles were carried back to cities by trained, long-distance runners. In their Olympic games, the winning runner received no money, no medal, only a crown of perishable olive leaves to adorn his head.* Paul's audience would have instantly made the connection with racing, but the value of the prize, salvation in Christ, would have emphasized all the more the infinite merit of their struggles and suffering in this life as they press on for the glory of God.
Theirs was the Great Race, the only one worth running, the only one worth winning. Where are you in the Great Race? Are you in training, or have you yet to buy your running shoes? Are you running with endurance, or are you continuously out of breath? Is the goal of becoming more Christ-like in sight, or are there ruts in the road tripping you up, hindering your progress? Wherever you may be in your Great Race, press on! Keep your eyes on the prize!
Psalms 40, 54 or 51
1 Kings 18:20-40
*Source for info on the sport of running in ancient Greece: www.richeast.org/htwm/Greeks/running/index.html
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